Sunday, January 31, 2016

Week 30: It Really Was Freezing Cold!!

Hello family and Friends. This week was an awesome bounce back week. We had a lot of fun events and super sick moments. There was one day in particular that just stood out over all the rest, and that was when we went contacting in 25 degree for 3 hours with a light sweater. But for all of you who are in places that are cold, then I'm sorry (Elder Fong I'm really sorry). But let's get started...

So the stellar moments were: I got to go on an exchange with our Zone Leader Elder Moon. We were on the campus of Texas A&M and it was super fun. We went out contacting and it was so fun contacting people my age. We also saw this guy named Pat and taught him a lesson about temples and family history work. Half way through the lesson we were sharing with him about how our ancestors need the key of baptism to enter into the kingdom of God, when out of the blue he's like, so what your saying is I need to baptize my ancestors in these temples, so that they can live in the kingdom of God? We were like yeah!! That's exactly what needs to happen. He was super excited and it was a really good lesson.

Well before the exchange we got to watch a world wide mission broadcast. We heard from some of the apostles and quorum of the 70. It was really good and it helped me improve on things that I am lacking on. But it was really cool because President Mortensen has already taught us a lot of the things that was taught about. It was really cool. Well after the exchange, on Thursday morning we had interviews with President. It went really well. I love talking to President because he is so inspired and knows how to help all of the missionaries. I've come a long way, because at the beginning of my mission I feared our President, but now I love him. He's awesome. 

Later on Thursday we got to go on splits. Elder Atkinson got to go to a few lessons while a youth in our branch named Charlie, and I got to go contacting for 3 hours. When we went contacting though, it was about 50 degrees when we went out, so we were in light sweaters but as we kept going the temperature dropped to 25 degrees. We were absolutely freezing. It was the best but the worst. It was probably the coldest I've been on my mission. Although, Clayton, who is 16, had the opportunity to knock on doors all by himself. I gave him a basic contact approach, and a back up approach, and he did so good, at it. There was this one door that we knocked, and the neighboring door opened up as well, so I told Clayton to get that one and I got the other. He did so good in that little moment where I abandoned him. He told me later, that he was like, No Elder Heiner . . . And that I came back just at the right time. It kind of reminded me of a time when I was training and I knocked this door and I was so afraid to talk, that right as the person was opening the door Elder Christensen ran around the corner. Yep good times good times. Well, anyways, one of the last doors we went to, Clayton knocked it. They told us they were just about to put their kids to bed, but Clayton was very persistent and we got the opportunity to go in their home and teach them a quick lesson. It was super awesome, because (their names are Bruce and Casandra) Casandra said that she knew that Heavenly Father was watching over her because she was having a bad day, and we were sent to her. It was awesome. It was a great way to finish off the split.

The rest of the week was good. We had a really cool experience on 
Saturday. We had the opportunity to eat with a part member family in our branch. They fed us, don't make fun of me because I have no idea how to spell this. . . . shishcabobs. They were really good. They also invited one of their friends who has some interest in the church and I started talking with her and I was able to give her a Book of Mormon and she seemed excited to read it. It was super great. We got to take pics as well. The Morris' are the best (that's the family we ate with).

On Friday, we had our last district meeting with our district. The H
ermanas (Sister Missionaries) in our district are both leaving, so now we are down to us 4 Elders. So after district meeting we went to Outback steak house. It was really good. We got the cheapest things and then just kept eating the bread that they gave us. It was so fun. So transfers are tomorrow and nothing is changing for Elder Atkinson and I. We are both staying in Navasota. It's going to be another fun transfer.

Do something amazing this week, Just For Me!

I love each and every one of you!

Love, Elder Heiner

Monday, January 18, 2016

Week 29: Time is Going So FAST!

Hello family and friends! This week was a really good week and had a lot of great learning moments. First I want to give a shout out to my dad who turned 30 this week. He's been 30 now for 13 years (it's kind of like a Peter Pan thing, where he doesn't get older). I love him so much and he has blessed me so much. Thanks so much dad!!! So this week not too much happened. All of our lessons kept falling through and it was a bit of a discouraging week teaching wise. But we got the chance to do a lot of finding and now we have some pretty exciting teaching visits this week lined up. So I'm super excited! So this week there were a few key highlights.

The first one was that I got the chance to go on exchanges with Elder Aholelei up in Bryan. It was so much fun. Saturday morning we got to go play ultimate frisbee with these return missionaries who live in the Bryan ward, 3 of the guys just got off their missions about a year ago and they are already married, crazy right. But anyways it was super fun and so tiring, mainly because I am so out of shape haha. We got to take out one of the youth from the Bryan Spanish ward named Oscar. He played Ultimate Frisbee with us and then later he went with us to this old Hispanic guy who was super funny. He could not understand Elder Aholelei's Spanish. We would have Aholelei say something and then Oscar say something and he would only understand Oscar. It was hilarious. During the day we found a few really good contacts, that could be huge potentials for the Brazos elders. Later we were going to have Lunch and we were trying to find a good restaurant, but we walked into this antique store (that also served food) and looked at these super cool antiques. Then later we went to this restaurant that was similar to a Kneader's from Utah, and we had some super good cheesecake. It was so fun. It was such a good exchange, but it was really funny because at the beginning of the exchange we were speaking so much Spanish and I was like, I hate all these lessons in Spanish (porque español es difícil) (but spanish is difficult) but then by the end of the exchange I said, I freaking love lessons in Spanish. So it was a great day. At the end of the Exchange we went to a members house in the Bryan ward and they fed us and we also did some Family History training with our whole district. It was so much fun! 

Yesterday was a pretty good day as well. We had 3 investigators at church. 1 of our investigators is super cool. Her name is Lupe and her husband (who we are also teaching) wasn't able to come to church, but she was able to come and she did it with her 3 kids, and 2 kids she was babysitting, and she even brought a member of our ward to church. She is stellar! She is a huge example to me, to show that much effort and dedication to go to church. Our other investigator named James is still set for being baptized on the 31st, but we get to help him get married to a girl he is living with. So now we are looking forward to having a wedding and a baptism. It's going to be so awesome! Yesterday we also got the chance to eat with the Foster family. They are a super fun family, and they kind of remind me of my family. We shared the video He Lives with them and it was really spiritual. We gave them the commitment that I give to all of you as well: everyday look for at least one person who you can bless. Talk to a random person who is alone, do something for a friend or a family member. How are you going to bless the lives of others.

I love all of you. Keep being you and have a great week. Thank you for your experiences, your testimonies and your sweet spirits. I love this work and am grateful for the opportunity to serve others and help change the lives of others.

Love Elder Heiner


Monday, January 11, 2016

Week 28: Es Poquito Frío Aquí (It's a little cold here)

Qué onda mis amigos. (What's up friends.) How y'all doin'. It's been a great week. We had a lot of fun moments, a lot of edifying experiences, and a lot of super sick events. So I will jump to it, literally.

This week we had exchanges and I went with Elder Thorne, and we partied in Navasota. But before we went on Exchanges Elder Aholelei had to go to MLC (Mission Leadership Council because he is the District Leader) so Elder Atkinson, Elder Thorne and I had a great time being in a trio for a lot of Tuesday. We taught James Garner, who has his baptism on the 31st of January, and I love him. He is so cool. He said one of the coolest things this last week, that just blew me away, he said:" After I get baptized, I'm so excited to come out with you guys from the morning to the night and share my story with everyone we meet". I love him. He is a stud. He is so prepared and he is so excited to get baptized. He is so apart of the branch now that it is crazy. He came to church yesterday for his 3rd week in a row and he loves it every time. I love how he desires to give back and serve the Lord. It is just amazing.

On Friday, one of our counselors in the mission presidencies wife died. President Vasquez lost his wife, and all the Spanish missionaries went down and sang a song in Spanish for it. It was a very spiritual experience. As everyone was sharing there experiences I got emotional. I didn't even know her but the spirit was so strong. It was the most touching when President Vasquez shared his thoughts about her. He said that he was sad that she was gone, but he's so happy that his queen is in paradise, waiting for him. It was a powerful funeral, and so edifying.

Yesterday was a tough day. I was pretty sick all day and I didn't want to work. After church I was super dead and I was laying on our couch, and thinking you can either stay right here and call it a night or you can get up and serve the Lord. So I decided to fight it. We got the chance to take out one of our young men from our ward named Junior, and we had a scheduled appointment with a lady and when we got there she told us that she just got back home and that she didn't want to talk to anyone, then out of the blue, this kid on the street, who is like 16, yells to us and he said," are you guys the Mormons"? We told him we were and he said that he would like us to come talk to him. So we went to his house and showed him a quick video. He loved it and we got a return appointment with him. He has a hard life right now, and I knew that at that moment if I had not gotten up, the Lord would have never led us to Trevor. Throughout the rest of the night we had 3 amazing lessons, but the best moment was at the very end of the night. It was 10 o'clock and we had just finished planning, when we got this call from one of our friends who isn't a member. He has a problem with the word of wisdom, and we told him that anytime he is tempted that he needs to call us. So he did just that. At first I didn't really know what to say to him, but as we kept talking the spirit prompted me to say certain things. It was a very spiritual moment, and at times I honestly didn't know what I was saying. We closed with a prayer and he told me thanks so much, I really needed that. I know that the Lord will bless us, if we are doing what he asks us to do. Sometimes we won't want to do it AT ALL, but if we fight it and work through it, the Lord will bless us.

The last thing is that today we had a super fun day. Our whole zone got to do a zone Pday because we all invited someone to be baptized everyday for two weeks. So we all went out to veterans park in College Station and played some soccer and Football! It was a blast. The field we played on was turf and Elder Atkinson got a huge rip in his shorts and I had some bad turf burns on my knees but it was so much fun.

I'm sorry that this is getting long but I heard this quote that I would love to share:  "If our lives and our faith are centered upon Jesus Christ and his restored gospel, nothing can ever go permanently wrong.” I love all of y'all. Have a great week.

Love Elder Heiner

Monday, January 4, 2016

Week 27: Things Are Getting "Fishy" In Navasota

Merry 2016 family and friends. It definitely does not feel like 2016. These last 6 months have been so going so fast. I have seen so much growth spiritually and I have been growing so close to my Father in Heaven. We have had a few miracles this week and a few just fun things that happened. So let's jump right into it.

The first was on New Years. We went to Adriana Cazares' house for a New Year's party. It was so cool. We got to meet the whole Cazares family, which a few of them are very less active, so it was a huge success. Well we had Tilapia and it was not just a filet, rather it was the entire fish. It was crazy. So it was a super exciting New Years and one that I will never forget.

So a couple miracles that we had: we went by a potential investigator that Elder Pesci and I found about a month ago. But we had tried so many times to get in with her but she was always busy, but Atkinson had the idea to go see her, and it turned out awesome. We showed the video "Because of Him", and invited her to church. Then it was sweet because on Sunday, she and her entire family showed up to church. It was so sick.

We were also able to take a youth out with us named Nolen. We went to this awesome potential named Kelly. We taught her the Restoration and it was a sweet lesson. The spirit was super strong and Nolen participated so much. It was incredible. The spirit helped us answer questions and Nolen is super smart for being 12 years old. He knew some of the things that I didn't know. It was super cool. She wasn't able to come to church but on Sunday Nolen was able to share his testimony and he shared about how he is so blessed that he gets the opportunity to go out with the missionaries. He said that he learned so much and how he is so excited to go with us again. He told us that he can't wait to go on a mission and be just like us. 

Before the mission I thought I would just bless random people's lives, members (like adults), and less actives. I never knew the impact that I would have on the youth. We have gotten almost all of the youth out with us to do at least 1 hour of missionary work, and every time it's been a great experience.

I love each and every one of you. Happy New Years, and someone tell Grandpa Happy Birthday for me. I l hope you guys have a boss week! One more quick thing that I just thought of: A very wise missionary once told me that Heavenly Father loves you, your savior loves you, your family loves you, and Satan hates your face. Remember when trials come, because they always do, you WILL overcome them. This week was really good, but it definitely had its trials. I have been beaten down this week, and Satan really hit me when I didn't expect it, but I have been revived by my Heavenly Father and my Savior. I know that we can overcome trials when they arise. Me encanta ustedes! Recuerda quienes. (I love you. Remember who you are).

Nos vemos a la próxima Lunes. (See you next Monday)

Con mucho amor (with much love), Elder Heiner